Sabbath Rules

In the car on the way to Dana’s church this morning (we’re spending Easter in Chicago, staying with Dana, Kari’s sister) we passed quite a number of orthodox Jews, on their way to school and work. I was reminded of studying Judaism in school and chuckling at the thought that the orthodox will not travel more than a mile on the Sabbath.

In retrospect, I was too quick to join in the laughter. There’s a lot to be said for a rule that ensures the congregation and place of worship live in close proximity. Naturally there’s a chance that those who are not among the faithful will be driven from the area, but at the same time it enforces a commitment to the locality, means that the act of attending weekly (or thereabout) gatherings does not involve consumption and environmental degradation, and ensures that the community of faith is also a community of daily life. An appealing notion.

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